Proof that the Mission restaurant invasion has not met its end, there are still more newcomers to add to the Valencia Corridor debriefing posted earlier today. Here now, a rundown on the remainder of the Mission's moves and additions that should not go unnoticed—from a bar named after a brothel owner to a new spot to get your panucho on.
If you want to have a successful excursion in this town, you need a plan—and it better be a good one. Since it's not always easy to strike that perfect balance between "pre-game" drink, food and a show, we bring you the Date Night series — a block-by-block guide to weekend itineraries that only require one parking space. Today, a night on the town in the Valencia Corridor.
We spotted partners Liz King (left) and Judith Powell (right), toughing the weather in cute coats and distressed boots, while out for a shop on Market St. Liz works retail development and oversees some of the construction of Apple stores, and Judith is the executive director of The First Tee of SF, a youth development program. When they're not hard at work, the two are busy shopping and eating local, in SF and beyond.
Last night around 7 p.m., I got off at the 16th Street BART station and headed down Valencia Street to meet some friends for a bite to eat. Past Locanda and Bar Tartine, which were just filling up, past other restaurants that were just dead empty, and then on the horizon, I saw an actual wait for a table, with people milling around. Lo and behold, it was at Mission Cheese, my dinner destination.
If you can tear yourself away from the cheese counter at the new Mission Cheese long enough, start your weekend at the Berkeley Art Museum and Film Archive's Ferment[cheese] event this Friday, which gets really nerdy–in a good way, duh!–about milk's epic journey from its liquid form into full-fledged cheesehood.
The best thing since sliced bread is most definitely "The Mousetrap": sliced sourdough stuffed with sharp cheddar and havarti. At least that's what The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen's co-owner Nate Pollack will tell you about his 10-month-old restaurant's best-seller. He and his wife and business partner Heidi Gibson sell about 100 Mousetraps daily, most of them with added Applewood-smoked bacon and tomato. "The most surprising thing about operating a grilled cheese restaurant is how much regular business we get," says Pollack. "We have people who eat here every day for breakfast and lunch."
Who knew? There's a market— a big one—for "adult" grilled cheese. Pollack tipped us off that April just so happens to be grilled cheese month. And as any self-respecting grilled cheese restaurant should, The American is celebrating.